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What is XNA exactly?

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I am learning C# at the moment and I keep hearing that people use XNA to build games. My question is what exactly XNA is. What exactly does it do?

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It's an API that wraps DirectX9 and adds some helper things. It runs on Windows XP / Vista, XBox360 (with membership), and the Zune.

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Well "XNA" is actually Microsoft's brand name for all game-related technology, which includes things like DirectX. When people talk about making games with XNA, they're talking about the XNA Framework. This framework is a collection of managed (.NET) classes intended for game development. This includes the Graphics namespace (which on the PC is basically a wrapper around D3D9), sound classes, input classes, classes for general math, and classes for working with the Content Pipeline. The Content Pipeline is a system that let's you, through a Visual Studio plugin, pre-process content into a format XNA understands and then manage loading of the content at runtime.

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Original post by MJP
Well "XNA" is actually Microsoft's brand name for all game-related technology, which includes things like DirectX. When people talk about making games with XNA, they're talking about the XNA Framework. This framework is a collection of managed (.NET) classes intended for game development. This includes the Graphics namespace (which on the PC is basically a wrapper around D3D9), sound classes, input classes, classes for general math, and classes for working with the Content Pipeline. The Content Pipeline is a system that let's you, through a Visual Studio plugin, pre-process content into a format XNA understands and then manage loading of the content at runtime.


Aw you beat me to the XNA technicality...

Also, MJP mentions XNA Framework, you might also hear it more commonly called the XNA Game Studio or XNA GS. XNA GS is the wrapper API for DirectX. It is intended to help speed up hobbyist development by providing simpler/quicker access to the graphics device and different systems used when making a game. Although it makes development usually faster than starting out with basic DirectX, I just finished my first game in it and it still took me about 3-4 months worth of work stretched out over a 6 month period of time.

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It's Pong with RPG elements. You play matches of Pong and it gives you XP for each match and points you can use to upgrade your paddle length, HP, magic power, etc... You can unlock magic and armor and stuff to use too.

I'd say 60% of that time at least was art creation though, the programming was really simple once I had built some base classes. Probably another 20% of that was implementing unlockable stuff and design items like stat allocating which is not all programmming. Probably 20% was hardcore propgramming, 20% was design coding, and 60% was creating art and designing.

I just finished it last night in fact and have to do some bug/beta testing still but I consider it to be done since there aren't any major additions yet to come.

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Yeah as a noob/beginner in game developing ...im so interested in doing this ...some things i've never heard of before and i need some teaching or need to learn a lot more before i jump into thing and i don't know much but im very commited to learning about game development and i have lots of ideas and is there anything that i should know like basics ....i heard of XNA on xbox where you can make your own games and stuff ...i do not know what C# is and i have an idea but not sure ...i just want to get started on some knowledge....

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Original post by ooCABLEoo
Yeah as a noob/beginner in game developing ...im so interested in doing this ...some things i've never heard of before and i need some teaching or need to learn a lot more before i jump into thing and i don't know much but im very commited to learning about game development and i have lots of ideas and is there anything that i should know like basics ....i heard of XNA on xbox where you can make your own games and stuff ...i do not know what C# is and i have an idea but not sure ...i just want to get started on some knowledge....


I'm just starting out in C# at the moment, and I highly recommend getting a book or something on it. Tutorials on the internet kind of suck as I've found. I jumped on Amazon and am now the proud owner of Head First C#. So far its a pretty good book, with lots of exercises and practice. I'm a little iffy about it starting me out in Windows Applications though instead of console... But I'll deal with it. I'm learning and understanding C# alot more, and that is what I needed.

But before getting into XNA and creating games on your own, make sure you get the basic idea of what C# is. With the book I own, the final project is to create a Space Invaders type game. So everything will accumulate and end in that.

Good luck with C#.

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